Summer Continues!

We’ve been pet sitting this Bearded Dragon, Ike, for the summer… to see if a bearded dragon would be the right lizard for our family. We have enjoyed Ike and his eager eating habits. We always love learning about new animals… but in the case of having a bearded dragon for a pet, the pros definitely do not outweigh the cons: The poop is very stinky and big, with the tank needing to be cleaned each day. The heat/lighting is very fragile and always needing to be adjusted. The diet is lots and lots of fresh greens and some crickets and meal worms.We have enjoyed Ike, though are ready to say our goodbyes!

Abbie worked at the Clark County Fair for the 2nd year. She volunteers in the Young Life food booth doing lots of different things from shucking corn, to pouring froszen lemonade, to selling corn on the cob, and using the $ register. She loves working the fair and has a GREAT time meeting and hanging out with friends after her shift! Last Saturday a group of friends met at the fair and then all came here for swimming, hot dogs, and a fire in the fire-pit.

My grandparents gave James and Abbie some tomato starts from seeds they’d saved over from their tomato plants last year. We are very proud to have not killed them. In fact, they are doing awesome! They are strong and healthy and have many yellow flowers… If we can get a tomato or two, we’ll be thrilled!

James had a pack of sugar snap peas so we planted those too! They are producing peas faster than we can eat them!

I planted strawberries for fun AND they have given us several berries so far!

The kids and I visited my grandparents this week. It was a wonderful visit. We all had such fun together! Granddad loves to share his garden. James and I picked loads of cucumbers and zuchinni ~ we can’t wait to make zuchinni bread!

Granddad loves to share his knowledge and James takes every bit of it in… I love to see my kids spending time and having fun with people I love and respect so deeply!!

James posing in front of Granddad’s HUGE tomato plants!

As things go, the snake’s life with us was short lived. He escaped and James was okay with it as it was the second time he’d found a way out… James realized he was a wild animal and would do anything to get back outside (we were all happy about this). Now the snake habitat is a habitat for the snails and trout creek James caught in the Rickreall Creek.

While the kids and I were away, Josh got busy on the deck (a project we have been dragging our feet on for almost… forever). It is looking amazing! I am so excited and proud of him!

James was interested and asked lots of questions… Josh was very patient even as he was work, work, working! Such a great Dad! James ended up with a paint brush and helping Josh with the painting by the end of tonight.

I can’t wait to share the finished product!! I am so so excited! We are going to be sanding, painting, and staining all day tomorrow in hopes of finishing the top deck!

Lights & Decorations!

The kids decorated the little trees they keep in their bedrooms last weekend.

At the same time, I started unpacking my Christmas boxes and have slowly began to decorate the house. Each year I look forward to decorating until I am actually doing it… what alot of work! In the end, it’s always worth it though!

Yesterday was the first day we’ve seen without rain in a very long time. Josh knew he needed to take advantage of the dry day and get up on the roof to hang the lights. They look awesome. I wish I would have taken a picture last night. Our house looked like a perfect little gingerbread house!

Once Josh was on the tippy-top of the roof, he ran out of lights. The kids and I had to decide who was going to brave the ladder and take him the remaining lights.

Chandler gave it a good shot…

In the end, I climbed the ladder onto the roof and tossed the lights to Josh. It was scary up there. It made me appreciate his work and the beauty of our lights even more.

Josh was missing Bill, his light hanging partner. I think the job is more fun and a bit easier with the help of a buddy!

A nighttime photo to come

Change of Seasons

I love Fall. This is the one season I dread and always end up loving. I dread the thought of Fall because it means summer has ended  & rain is on it’s way. Although this year we have been so fortunate to have beautiful sunshine in our days! The rain will come, the clouds will hover, and our days will fill with gray – until then I will be thankful for the bright & beautiful days of Fall.

Here is the bright-blue, chilly, sunshine-y day I woke to this morning:

- From our front porch -

We’ve had our last swim in the pool. Deck chairs are tucked away for winter. Pool toys are ready to be stored. The pool will soon be covered and winterized.

The house smells of cinnamon & cloves. Fall colors and decorations make our house happy!

Welcome to the Johnson’s!

and of course, the evening fire makes our home warm & cozy.

There is much to LOVE about Fall.


It’s going a bit slower than I expected. Being new to painting, I thought I could do the entire job by myself in one day… as you can see, I’ve had lots of help and it’s taken a little more than a day!

even our beautiful boy, Max, has been in the middle of all the fun!

To get into the space above the fridge, we had to bring in a bigger ladder.

and I had to conquer my fear of heights!

Here’s where we are so far…

Today we WILL finish this project. AND it looks like a rain-free day, so Josh may be able to start his deck!

Rainy Day Fun!

Today we bought paint. After some debating, we settled on Bison (brown) and Trillium (green). The paint we bought is “green” and environmentally friendly… it’s Devine: color therapy for the northwest!

Here we are trying out some of the samples we bought…

Josh has been busy taping walls

as I start to paint…

Here is the first coat of Bison. We love it!

The deck is still waiting for the rain to stop… Thursday is looking like a good day. We are ready!

It’s a BIG job, but we think we’ve recruited a few helpers!

On a side note, James finally created a habitat for and purchased 2 fire-bellied toads. He named the small one Bumpy and the big one Horny.Yep.

Getting Started

Josh and I both chose a project to work on over Spring Break. My project is to tear down all the wallpaper border in the kitchen and repaint with a fun & inviting color. I feel like the kitchen is where we spend most of our time, it’s like the center of our house… so it needs to feel more inviting. The beige walls aren’t working for me.

Step One: Take a Visit to Lowe’s & Buy $$ Supplies

Step Two: Get the Paper Down



Notice how this is my project yet, I have a crew doing all my work… Hmmm!


It already looks cleaner and less cluttered. Today we head to the paint store and decide on the color(s)!

Josh’s Project is to tackle this deck. He is striping the old paint off, pulling out old screws, planing the wood, and when the weather turns sunnier… he’ll stain with a mahogany flame with white or cream rails… it will be so very beautiful!

Step Three: Paint

(hoping it will happen today… fingers crossed!)